Skin Cancer in Miami
Miami residents are well aware of the need for sun protection. Nonetheless, plastic and reconstructive surgeons in Miami commonly perform skin cancer surgery for patients presenting symptoms of basal cell carcinoma, squamous cell carcinoma and melanoma.
Basal cell carcinoma, a slow-growing cancer that develops in the basal cells of the epidermal layer, is the most common non-melanoma skin cancer. While it rarely metastasizes, BCC can significantly disfigure the skin if neglected.
Another common non-melanoma skin cancer is the slow-growing squamous cell carcinoma (SCC). Although it is unlikely, squamous cell carcinomas can metastasize and even result in death.
Who Should Undergo Treatment for Skin Cancer in Miami?
Patients affected by any type of skin cancer should be treated as soon as possible. Some people have a higher risk for skin cancer. For example, those who have had been previously diagnosed with basal cell carcinoma are at higher risk for contracting squamous cell carcinoma. Other risk factors include:
- Genetic susceptibility
- Fair complexion/skin tone
- Blonde or red hair
- Light-colored eyes
The Surgical Procedure: How Skin Cancer Surgery Works
For most patients, skin cancer surgery will be an outpatient procedure under a local anesthetic. Based on factors such as the type of cancer, its location, its severity, and your medical background, Dr. Maercks will determine the appropriate surgical plan.
Techniques include curettage, surgical excision, Mohs micrographic surgery, radiation therapy, or cryotherapy. For small tumors, Dr. Maercks may surgically remove the tumor (along with some adjacent healthy tissue) using excision, curettage or cryotherapy. For more advanced cancer, or for recurring cancer, Mohs micrographic surgery may be selected so that all of the tissue removed has been methodically examined under microscope, ensuring that no cancer remains. Radiation therapy is typically reserved for the most advanced cancer.
Life After Treatment for Skin Cancer in Miami
The post-treatment experience will vary depending on the treatment used as well as factors specific to the patient, like general health, age, and medical history. Dr. Maercks may schedule follow-up visits with you so that he can monitor your recovery.
Do you have questions about treatment for skin cancer in Miami? Contact the office of Miami Beach plastic surgeon Rian A. Maercks to learn more about these procedures.